68th Anniversary of the National Liberation
[Mayor Park Won Soon’s Hope Journal 237]

Today (August 15,
2013) marks the 68th anniversary of the national liberation. I saw a
documentary film concerning the process of publication of a picture book about
the story of Ms. Sim Dal-yeon, who was forced by the Japanese military to serve
as comfort woman during the Pacific War. The book was made as part of the Korea-China-Japan
Book Project for Peace but has not been published in Japan due to disruptive
lobbying by extreme right wing groups.

 

In 1992, I was studying
at a university in London. I met a Japanese lawyer named Etsuto Dokuga, who was
studying issues involving comfort women at the same university. I felt ashamed,
since I did not know anything about them. I started studying things about those
pitiful women, many of whom are Korean. I continued researching on war crimes
at Harvard University the following year. I
expressed my view to the Japanese Bar Association through a thesis that there
is no statute of limitation on war crimes or humanitarian crimes. I, together with
Ms. Gang Deok-gyeong, a comfort woman, submitted a letter of charge against
those responsible for the mobilization of comfort women to the Tokyo District
Court.

 

At the International Tribunal on Crimes against Women held in Tokyo in 2000, I served as the
head prosecutor representing the two Koreas and filed a complaint against those
responsible for comfort women including Japanese Emperor Hirohito. Those who
belonged to the Japanese right wing organizations staged a street
demonstration, saying that the Japanese milit…